Sunday, January 27, 2013
I have tried three times this weekend to make bread.
Friday I made the dough for the twelve-hour, no-knead country bread recipe from Cook's magazine, one I've made at least half a dozen times before and always successfully. Imagine my surprise when I took the rising bowl out of the microwave (cook 1 cup of water for 2 minutes, remove the water and use as a rising oven. No drafts. I always set bread to rise in the microwave), instead of a high, wide and handsome Clint Walker batch of dough I got Gabby Hayes.
Oh, well, the weekend was young. On Saturday I set my bread machine for a loaf of wheat bread. What the machine produced -- again using a trusted recipe -- was a densely compacted tan brick with a decided list to starboard.
Was it the yeast? Is my bread flour too old? Am I perhaps a bit slapdash in putting my dough together?
This morning I downloaded this recipe from the Fleischmann's website and followed the instructions to the letter. Unfortunately as I was in the middle of the mixing process the phone rang and I had to speak with a young lady from the Red Cross who wanted me to donate blood next week. I returned to my batter, finished the kneading, placed it in the rising bowl and the rising bowl in the microwave ---
-- turned around and saw the package of yeast cleverly hiding from me behind the stand mixer.
It's a good thing the spousal unit likes whomp biscuits because that's what he's getting with his dinner tonight.